19 November 2012, Tokyo, Japan - The UNITAR Diplomatic Training Series in Tokyo, run by the UNITAR Hiroshima Office, recently concluded its fourth session. Entitled Rio+20 and the Green Economy, the 4-day session saw representatives from 17 Embassies in Tokyo in attendance. With faculty members from UNITAR, and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the session examined international developments leading up to, and in the aftermath of, the Rio+20 Summit earlier in 2012, as well as the concepts behind the Green Economy.

The specific objectives of the Workshop included:

  • Examining the proceedings and achievements of Rio+20;

  • Defining the concept of a Green Economy;

  • Describing the social, environmental and economic benefits of advancing a Green Economy;

  • Identifying enabling conditions for the greening of national economies;

  • Identifying principal challenges and opportunities for the greening of key economic sectors;

  • Describing national planning processes in support of a green transformation.

The session was opened by the Vice-Rector of United Nations University and Director of United Nations University Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS), Professor Govindan Parayil, who outlined the history of the Rio Summit, as well as outlining the goals and achievements of Rio+20 as seen from within the United Nations System. UNITAR thanks Professor Parayil for his continued support, as well as for making time in his schedule to inaugurate the session.

The curriculum saw lectures, video presentations and practical exercises working to contextualize the coalescing notions of a Green Economy for the gathered participants.

The final day saw the session addressed by Mr. Matthew Gubb, Director UNEP-International Environmental Technology Center (IETC) in Osaka, who outlined the outcomes of Rio+20 from the viewpoint of UNEP itself.